Lesser known New Year traditions | Recipes | Chef Sanjeev Kapoor

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On New Year’s Eve, different traditions are followed around the globe. Some are old, some new and some are absolutely bizarre. But all these have one thing in common – they either represent gratefulness, removal of negative energy or praying and preparing for a year ahead, full of abundance. The celebration commonly involves food, games, fortune-telling, good luck charms and at the stroke of midnight, sound making. Friends and family gather, spend quality time, let go off past grudges, be grateful to one another and cheer for a healthy and happy life.  

 

Celebrating New Year, across the globe, in the most unique way:

 

Spain

If you manage to stuff 12 grapes in your mouth at midnight and greet everyone with a ‘Happy New Year,’ you have achieved good luck for the next year. This Spanish tradition has been around for the longest time and is definitely a very interesting one.  You can try doing it this year!

 

Philippines

In the Philippines, it’s all about the ‘cash.’ They believe that everything should be round so as to represent the shape of a coin and bring wealth. They serve around food and wear round clothes; as long as its round, it’s a part of New Year’s Eve! Filipinos make it a point to be noisy when they celebrate. It is considered a way of shooing away bad energy.

 

France

The French like to welcome the New Year with lots of food, a champagne toast and kisses under the mistletoe, which is a common tradition in other cultures too.  They also believe on the weather forecast on New Year’s Day, signifying   the approaching year’s harvest and accounting aspects of wind direction to anticipate the fruitfulness of crops and fish.

 

Ireland

For many centuries, the Irish have been banging bread loaves on doors and walls of a house as their New Year tradition. This chases the bad luck out of the house and brings in good luck.

 

Estonia

The Estonians believe in eating 7 times on New Year’s Day to ensure abundance in the coming year.  

 

New York City, USA

This iconic tradition of dropping a giant ball at the stroke of midnight in New York City’s Times Square is a popular tradition that millions of people around the world witness without fail, either from their homes or from Times Square itself, almost every year since 1907.

 

Portugal, Hungary, Cuba and Austria

In these cultures and some more, pigs represent prosperity and progress. Which is why pork is a must have on New Year’s Eve. 

 

Netherlands, Mexico and Greece

People here celebrate the New Year’s Eve with ring-shaped pastries and cakes. It represents the year coming to a full circle.

 

What’s your unique way of ushering into the New Year? Tell us, we’re all ears!

Happy New Year!

 

 


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MasterChef Sanjeev Kapoor

Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal www.sanjeevkapoor.com is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.